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P0304 that won't go away!!

 
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Old 13 Aug 2014, 07:05 pm
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Default P0304 that won't go away!!

Hello!

I have a 2007 pt cruiser base convertible, 58,000 miles with a misfire P0304. We replaced coil, sparks plug and cables. Added fuel cleaner and asked that I fill up with higher quality gas and drive with it a bit. But a week after, still P0304, and a flashing check engine at idle. We then tested computer and electrical cables to and from computer and cylinder #4. All good. Then exchanged injector between #1 and #4 to check if the code would move. Still P0304. Did compression testing (1,2 &3 at 160, #4 at 120), finally did a leakdown test and confirmed the leak in #4.

The dealership service is telling me that they think it is a burnt valve but cannot confirm before removing the head and that would be about a 10hr job at $1000.

Another garage told me that it is rare that there are burnt valve now a days, especially with this low mileage and this propably the case of extreme carbon built-up in the piston. They are suggesting a $200 clean up.

What is your feeling on this? Should i try the clean up first? Is a 10hr job to remove the head reasonable? Any other suggestions to try?

Thanks in advance to help this little lady who really loves her convertible!
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Old 13 Aug 2014, 08:13 pm
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Default Re: P0304 that won't go away!!

I could see carbon on a valve causing your problem, not on a piston, and wonder why it would be prevalent only in one cylinder. What did they say they'd do for $200? I suspect throw a few bucks worth of chemicals in your tank.
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Old 13 Aug 2014, 08:19 pm
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Default Re: P0304 that won't go away!!

The dealership is the only place I would trust. Often times, it costs more in the long run to take your car to other places rather than getting it fixed the first time at the dealer.
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Old 13 Aug 2014, 09:29 pm
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Default Re: P0304 that won't go away!!

Quicksilverdon,

Re: piston - my bad, I misunderstood the mechanic, he did say valve, not piston.

Re: Carbon in only one cylinder - I've had p0304 for about 4 months. Got the sparks plug and wire done then, but the mechanic (another one) installed the wrong ones (Bosch) does this make a difference if it is only apparent on cylinder #4? CEL was not on, but rough idle during that time.

Thank you both for your fast reply!
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Old 14 Aug 2014, 07:11 am
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Default Re: P0304 that won't go away!!

Check to make sure you have a good seal between the two intake manifolds. A poor seal will cause your exact issue. It always seems that when the seal is poor the #4 cylinder is the one that misfires.
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Old 14 Aug 2014, 09:19 am
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Default Re: P0304 that won't go away!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray_Dockrey View Post
Check to make sure you have a good seal between the two intake manifolds. A poor seal will cause your exact issue. It always seems that when the seal is poor the #4 cylinder is the one that misfires.
Ray has a good point. Is idle rough? If the idle smooths out when you spray starting fluid along the manifold seam, then you know it is intake gasket - not a big or expensive deal.
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Old 14 Aug 2014, 09:35 am
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Default Re: P0304 that won't go away!!

The leak-down test was not done completely or you would have had determined a intake or exhaust valve problem.

Carbon build up is not the problem here if the other compression results are accurate.

IMO I would not spend the money for a shops so called "clean up". My question right off to them is how do the expect to get anything behind the vale?
My suggestion is to connect a vacuum tester that will help add to the other properly done tests to determine engine mechanical condition.

Dealerships are no guarantee quality of workmanship or having a trained experience Technician doing diagnostic's on your Pt Cruiser.

The other service shops if you recommending the "clean up" is just IMO lame!

At 58k miles I seriously doubt that you have and carbon worth mentioning mostly because of the the intake and fueling system that are on PT Cruisers. Your knock values would be all over the place and you would be experiencing more DTCs than just a P0304.

One last thing are you accessing the diagnostic port to view the DTC? If not this is where you should be getting your ECM information.
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Old 14 Aug 2014, 05:36 pm
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Default Re: P0304 that won't go away!!

Thank you all!

I don't have all the answers to your questions, but I can confirm that leakdown test confirm a leak to the exhaust. Would that change the story with the intake manifolds seam issue? If yes, what type of fluid should I test this with? WD-40?

Since all these testing done, the idle is really smooth, but still a check engine light. Not flashing, so there's that.

Another question I have is, should/Can I drive the car? I'm not talking about huge distances, but to the store and such?

Thanks again, I really appreciate your time!
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